Ohguma Castle

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The castle first appears to history in 1480 during the Suwa Clan Civil War (mentioned in the Kanchō Moriya Manjō Kakitome, "Complete Records of the Kanchō Moriya" (神長守矢満定書留)). When the Kanasashi were defeated in 1483, their leader's head was paraded for two nights here at Ôgumajō during the victory celebrations. It must've been a wild party.

In 1535 Takeda Nobutora made a truce with Suwa Yorishige and Yorishige took Nobutora's daughter as his wife, cementing their relations. However, in 1542, the new leader of the Takeda, Takeda Shingen, invaded Suwa and besieged the Suwa's castles, including Ôgumajō. Suwa Yorishige was defeated and obliged to fall on his sword. Shingen married his daughter and produced his heir, Katsuyori, the intended future ruler of all Takeda domains, including Suwa. Ôgumajō was abandoned in 1549 with the supersession of nearby Aruga Castle.

Visit Notes

Ôgumajō amounts to a small but well-maintained earthenwork ruin situated on the hillside. The site is now a flower garden and agricultural space and so, with all the trees cut down, we can easily get a sense of the castle's scale from a distance.


Castle Profile
English Name Ohguma Castle
Japanese Name 大熊城
Founder Suwa Clan
Year Founded Before 1480
Castle Type Hilltop
Castle Condition Ruins only
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Artifacts Kuruwa, Dorui, Hori
Features trenches
Visitor Information
Access Kami-Suwa Station on the Chuo Line; 75 minute walk. Or Chino Station; 70 minute walk
Visitor Information 24/7 free
Time Required 20 minutes
Location Suwa, Nagano Prefecture
Coordinates 36° 0' 16.34" N, 138° 6' 16.92" E
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Added to Jcastle 2020
Contributor ART
Admin Year Visited Viewer Contributed

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